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Businesses say fuel prices could force them to change delivery practices

Fuel prices could change delivery times
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Posted at 6:15 PM, Mar 09, 2022

CINCINNATI — Local business owners said historic high fuel prices may force them to change some of the ways they do business.

The goal is to keep customers by avoiding raising prices in their stores.

Semi and box truck drivers and fleet management companies predict they will raise fuel surcharge prices to afford diesel.

That means deliveries could cost local shops more than ever, and many of them receive product daily.

Take Schaeper Pharmacy in Northside, for example.

“It's absolutely going to be more challenging for us,” said Richard Schaeper.

Schaeper is the pharmacist there and said his store relies on deliveries weekly, sometimes daily, for medicine.

“It'll be passed on to the customer, the consumer, ultimately,” said Shaeper.

Down the street from his store, Northside ShipIt employee Sophie Dunham said, “We’ve had one stance where one of our deliverers charged a one-time surcharge just for refueling their delivery trucks.”

Managers there say they’re limiting how much they rely on large scale deliveries.

“We try and buy things as strategically as possible so it doesn’t upcharge the customer in the long run,” said Dunham.

Northside Hardware worker Kevin Bomkamp said that location received deliveries from two trucks a week and is preparing to hear that drivers have raised prices.

“We are bracing to see it go up,” said Bomkamp. “Hopefully, that does not happen. In the way that everything is going on in the world, you know, if it does happen, you just got to take it as it is.”

Back at Schaeper’s Pharmacy, Schaeper’s team delivers to individual customers and clinics as well. He said he may have to consolidate deliveries.

“We’re not going to be able to go to the same house, you know, three times in one week,” said Schaeper. “People are going to have to help us keep them all together in one delivery in one week, and that will be it unless there’s an emergency.”

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